Sunday, February 17, 2019

The Mark of Gideon

TOS Season 3 Episode 16
Air Date: January 17th, 1969


Kirk is given the responsibility of being the sole representative to the planet Gideon for the Federation. They have never allowed a delegation to land or sensors to scan the planet. When Kirk beams down it appears like a transporter issue occurs and Kirk is back on the Enterprise, only there is nobody aboard. Kirk thinks time has passed and has no memory as he has suffered some bruising on his arm.

The Gideon leadership contacts the Enterprise and asks where Kirk is. Spock informs him that they just transported down. Hodin, the leader refuses letting Spock transport down to the planet to conduct a search. Spock uses diplomacy to convince the Hodin to at least test the transporter in an effort to get Spock down. But Hodin allowed the transporter to be tested on one of them.

Meanwhile Kirk explores the Enterprise and encounters a women named Odana. She thinks Kirk brought her aboard. Kirk tells her that he is missing 9 minutes of time and when he mentions Hodin, Odana claims it isn't where she is from. When Kirk looks out the view screen, he notices they are not in orbit of Hodin. We learn from Odana that where she is from is so crowded that her people strives to be alone. In a moment of intimacy with Odana the view screen changes from stars to a dozen people looking in. As they were walking around the Enterprise they start hearing a noise. Kirk opens a viewport to look and sees faces looking in, then it turns to stars.

It is then revealed that the Hodin was watching Kirk in a copy of the Enterprise. You can see outside that the population is shoulder to shoulder with no room for anyone to go anywhere. Odana gets sick and passes out and Hodin shows up and takes her saying that her illness is a blessing. The people of Gideon never get sick until they are very old and die which has caused their population to spike to the point that there is no room for anyone on the planet. Shoulder to shoulder on all continents.

Odana, who is Hodin's daughter develops meningitis, which Kirk developed once in his life making him a carrier. Hodin explains that they cannot kill, and they value life too much to stop reproducing, but if they were to die of a natural cause, such as disease it could help them regain paradise on Gideon. Spock reaches the Kirk and they beam to the Enterprise with Odana. McCoy is able to treat her and save her life.

They don't resolve the overcrowding issue on Gideon.


"We must acknowledge once and for all that the purpose of diplomacy is to prolong a crisis." - Spock

"Institute a sensor scan 360 degrees, one degree at a time." - Spock
"You mean you're going to scan space for him?" - McCoy
"But, sir, that could take years." - Sulu
"Then the sooner you begin, the better." - Spock

"All my life, I've dreamed of being alone." - Odana
"Most people are afraid of being alone." - Kirk
"Where I come from, people dream of it." - Odana

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